Volleyball sweeps Southern Maine 3-0 on the road

Junior Taylor Stafford-Smith and the Bates volleyball team defeated Southern Maine 3-0 on Tuesday, September 11, 2018. (File photo by Phyllis Graber Jensen/Bates College)

GORHAM, Maine -- The Bates volleyball team rallied from an eight-point deficit in the first set and went on to defeat the University of Southern Maine Huskies 3-0 (26-24, 25-19, 25-18) in non-conference action Tuesday evening at the Warren Hill Gymnasium.

Trailing 19-11, the Bobcats (3-1) rallied behind the strong net play of sophomore Ruby Lightbourn (Los Angeles, Calif.) who had four kills in a 15-5 run to overcome the deficit and take the first set. Tied 15-15, Bates surged ahead with a 10-4 run to win the second set to go up 2-0. The third set proved to be a replay of the second as the Bobcats again came from behind in the latter stages.

Junior Taylor Stafford-Smith (Calabasas, Calif.) combined with Lightbourn for 24 kills. Stafford-Smith knocked down 13 kills and compiled a .435 attack percentage while Lightbourn had 11 kills and a .292 attack percentage. Lightbourn also had three service aces.

Junior setter Julia Panepinto (Buffalo, N.Y.) dished out 29 assists and three service aces on the evening. Junior libero Gabi Eustache (New York, N.Y.) led all players with 13 digs.

For the Huskies (3-4), sophomore Kacey Foerster had seven kills, and rookie Alexis Dow and junior Kylee Austin combined for 12 kills (six apiece) at the middle hitter spot. Austin also had four blocks, and Dow had three.

Senior Nicole Schmitz had 18 assists, and sophomore Kristina Odom posted eight digs.

Bates hosts Tufts University on Friday (7 p.m.) to open its NESCAC schedule.